Harvest Moon: Lil’ Farmers (iOS, Android)

The farming simulation series Harvest Moon has been delighting fans for decades.  And now there’s a brand new Harvest Moon game especially made just for the youngest farmers in your family.  It’s available to download on mobile devices, but reviewed on iPad here.

You control the game simply by tapping and dragging objects around on the touch screen.  At the farmhouse, people will come asking for farm products, and you must give them what they want.  If they ask for a vegetable, you can go to the garden, tap on a plot of land, pick your vegetable, and then water it and give it plant food when prompted until it’s grown enough to harvest.  You can also play a mini-game to gather eggs from chickens, shear sheep for wool, and milk a cow.  You can also feed and clean a horse, but I don’t know what good that does.  Just another cute little activity, I guess.

The concept is really adorable, and I’d totally recommend this game for little kids.  But it still has a few minor problems.  You’re not really rewarded for doing anything in this game.  So kids might get bored with it after a while.  And when you exit the game, it doesn’t save your progress, not like you really make any so it doesn’t really matter.  A couple of times I would give a customer what they wanted, and they still said it was wrong, only to take it a few tries later, but I think that’s just a bug that can be fixed in an update.  And I have to wonder if they just found some generic preschool farm game and just slapped the Harvest Moon name on it.

But even with those problems, I still think this is a cute little game for younger kids.  Heck, even older Harvest Moon fans may enjoy it as a simple time waster or something they can play with the younger set.  And it’s not a bad deal at only four bucks.

Kid Factor:

Nothing objectionable or violent here.  Reading skill isn’t necessary, in fact, the game has no words in it at all (probably makes it easier to port this game to other countries).  It could also be considered educational, as it shows kids where certain vegetables and farm foods and products come from, as well as counting and sorting skills.  Best of all, there are no in-game ads or purchases, so it’s very kid-friendly.

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